1 September 2009 (London, UK) — Calvin Ayre, founder of the global media brand Bodog, has surprised the iGaming industry by returning as keynote speaker of the Budapest Affiliate Conference 09 (Sept. 10th-13th). After selling the online gaming business to the Morris Mohawk Gaming Group following the passage of the UIGEA, Ayre left the limelight and the life of an iGaming operator behind and, for many in the industry, appeared to vanish. In reality, Ayre was far from vanishing. Away from the glare of the cameras, he was quietly working on a renewed vision of the Bodog brand, a brand he had conceived of and developed into one of the most recognizable in the industry. Ayre vowed to turn Bodog into a household word synonymous not only with online gaming, but a lifestyle that could span industries and continents around the globe. In what some have called his masterstroke, he consolidated and retained the global rights to the Bodog brand, electing instead to simply license its use to designated brand licensee. “Bodog” the online gaming company was no more, and in its place the Bodog brand licensing powerhouse was born … the King is dead – long live the King.
“We are absolutely thrilled that the eminent Calvin Ayre will be joining us at Budapest.” Alex Pratt, Publisher of iGaming Business and organiser of the event stated “He is an industry leader with true entrepreneurial genius and we are happy to be able to give this chance for delegates to meet and gain invaluable knowledge from the legend.”
No longer an iGaming operator, Ayre now works primarily with the BodogBrand.com enterprise to identify potential Bodog brand licensees – a model now being emulated by some of the largest gaming brands on Earth. As a result of subsequent “franchise”-like brand license deals, the Bodog online gaming experience is now worldwide through the MMGG (www.bodog.com), Bodog Europe (www.bodog.co.uk and www.bodog.ca), and most recently Bodog Asia (www.bodog88.com), each of which operates independently and pursuant its own gaming license.
But how will this benefit BAC delegates? Ayre’s origin story is in itself peppered with lessons to learn about how to grow a brand and business. From a humble background, raised on a farm in Saskatchewan, Canada, Ayre started Bodog with only $10,000 in his pocket and built a multi-million dollar global empire. He has been hailed by many as the guru of marketing, PR and branding within the online gaming industry. In late 2006, according to hitwise.com, bodog.com was the world’s largest online gaming site for traffic and traffic is definitely something that will get an affiliate’s pulse rate up, yet another reason why Ayre’s presentation is a must-attend for all BAC delegates.
Ayre noted, “I’m very flattered to have been asked to be this year’s keynote speaker in Budapest. The iGaming space is the birthplace of the Bodog brand, and it remains one of the must dynamic and fascinating sectors in the entertainment space. Thanks to BodogBrand.com’s world-class licensees, each of which brings regional knowledge and expertise to their respective markets, the brand has become truly global – the sun never sets on Bodog now. I look forward to continuing to work with BodogBrand.com to help identify potential brand licensees to take the “Bodog” experience into new markets.”
It is not, however, simply from the past that we can look for lessons to learn. Rumours are afoot that one of the primary reasons for his emergence was the recent revelation that a new Bodog brand licensee has been secured – a stand-alone, Bodog-branded poker network (www.bodogpoker.com). Speculation is rampant as to who will be running this latest branded venture and how it intends to change the poker network game. Will he be revealing any details at the Conference?
Whether he is in Budapest for business or pleasure, Calvin Ayre’s adventures are always noteworthy and should certainly be watched closely. To attend the event, which is free for all affiliates, go to www.budapestaffiliateconference.com, Mr. Ayre’s session at 12.45pm on Saturday, Sept. 12 is bound to be full of secret gems and insightful tips into his success.
About the Budapest Affiliate Conference
The Budapest Affiliate Conference (BAC) is organized by iGaming Business under the iGB Affiliate brand. The event is part of a series of affiliate conferences and expos which began as CAP Euro in January 2007, and has grown from 600 attendees to over 1700 attendees in just two years making it the biggest iGaming affiliate event in the sector. This rapid success has come about by keeping true to a simple philosophy: “Put Affiliates First”, which is the backbone of the events. For more information on the Budapest Affiliate Conference, please visit www.BudapestAffiliateConference.com or for information on iGB Affiliate please visit www.iGBAffiliate.com.
About iGaming Business
iGaming Business has been in the iGaming industry for over 8 years and as well as producing affiliate events publishes market leading magazines such as iGaming Business and iGaming Business Affiliate Magazine both considered the bibles for the iGaming Sector and read by thousands of affiliates, vendors and operators each and every month.